Each week, one college football game stands apart from all the rest, distinguishing itself as that lone contest so lifeless, so meaningless, so devoid of any redeeming characteristic that I cannot bring myself to pay attention to it, much less predict the winner of it. That complete waste of a gridiron clash is the national game of disinterest.
The choice for this week's national game of disinterest was obvious:
Miami (Florida) at Georgia Tech
Wait a minute . . . that can't be right, can it? The Hurricanes and the Yellow Jackets are good, aren't they? Surely this game has some impact on the A.C.C. title, doesn't it?
As a matter of fact, it can, they aren't, and it doesn't. Despite the high degree of name recognition enjoyed by the two teams, this game is a dud.
Face it: this game isn't just dull, it's Al-Gore-giving-a-speech-on-government-reform dull.
One coach is staring down the barrel of the surest firing in college football this season. The other coach defines mediocrity and briefly flirted with the sort of improvement that might have relieved some of the pressure he must feel to please the athletic director who succeeded, and is not beholden to, the athletic director who hired him.
Neither team has beaten anyone of consequence and both teams have survived scares from lower-tier opponents whose names are four-letter words in Division I-A college football. Troy went into the fourth quarter against Georgia Tech in a position to win the game and Duke made the Miami faithful exceedingly nervous last weekend. Both absorbed absolute beat-downs from the best teams each of them faced . . . Louisville and Clemson, respectively.
This is a car wreck of a football game. (I use that analogy because both schools' campuses are located in urban settings in which interest in rubbernecking when passing highway collisions exceeds focus on the local college teams. I'm just doing what I can to help.)
At one time, Atlanta was the City Too Busy to Hate. Now it's the City Too Busy to Care Much One Way or the Other.
What we have here is a contest that is much, much less than the sum of its parts. This one wouldn't even be made intriguing if a fight broke out, since it's abundantly clear who would win a physical confrontation between thugs and nerds.
When a game is so inconsequential that it wouldn't warrant watching even to witness a bench-clearing brawl, that is the national game of disinterest. Avoid it now and thank me later.